Security Predictions for MSSPs and MSPs 2024

Security Predictions for MSPs & MSSPs for 2024

Looking into 2024: Security Predictions for MSSPs and MSPs 

2023 is coming to a close, marking the end of a year filled with remarkable technological advancements, from generative AI to new cybersecurity capabilities. As we prepare to enjoy the holiday season and welcome the New Year, it’s important to remember that many cyber attackers don’t observe holidays. As such, SMBs will increasingly rely on your expertise this coming year to protect their most valuable assets from being breached. 

Here are my predictions for the SMB and cybersecurity landscape that will impact you as an MSP/MSSP this upcoming year. Looking ahead, by providing vCISO services you will be able to turn 2024 into a year of security and growth for SMBs. Therefore, vCISO services are poised to boost your revenue stream significantly and help you differentiate yourself among other service providers, making 2024 a growth year for you as well. 

Here’s what I predict will happen in 2024:

1. Increased SMB Targeting by Cybercriminals

Small and medium-sized businesses are becoming more frequent targets for cyber-attacks and 2024 will be no different. In 2023, 73% of SMBs experienced a cyberattack, data breach, or both, according to the 2023 ITRC Business Impact Report. This is not only a high attack rate, it’s also a significant increase compared to the rates in 2022 (43%) and 2021 (58%), and rates will continue to remain high. 

One of the reasons behind this alarming trend is that cyber attackers are no longer sparing SMBs of their malicious attention. The Verizon 2023 DBIR analyzed attack trends for SMBs and large businesses and found that differences between the two types of organizations were becoming increasingly blurred. This includes aspects like attack frequency, threat actors, motives and types of compromised data. 

What Does This Mean for MSPs/MSSPs? 

Equipped with these understandings, SMBs are realizing that cyber security is becoming a necessity, not a nice-to-have luxury. Therefore, MSPs/MSSPs are expected to experience heightened demand in 2024 for expert cybersecurity leadership. By providing comprehensive vCISO services, MSPs/MSSPs can address the growing customer need for proactive cyber resilience. 

This growing need for vCISO services is also an opportunity for MSPs/MSSPs to grow their recurring revenue. By providing a new and crystallized offering to their customers, MSPs/MSSPs can increase sales and differentiate themselves from the competition. Finally, leveraging the vCISO offering to connect to SMBs leadership, allows MSPs/MSSPs to deepen their business engagement and build a stronger relationship with customers.

2. Rapidly Evolving Regulatory Landscape

New and updated regulations in cybersecurity and data privacy are expected to come into full effect by 2024. SMBs will be required to meet regulations for handling PII, financial information, and other types of sensitive data when working with governmental bodies. The rising concern over supply chain and third-party attacks will also lead large businesses to enforce stringent security measures on SMBs, leaving them with no choice but to conform if they want to conduct business with them. 

In addition, in 2024, security compliance will not just be a regulatory requirement but also a business necessity. SMBs looking to position themselves as a trustworthy and security entity will  actively seek to meet regulations or frameworks like NIST-CSF, CIS V8 or ISO 27001 as a way to demonstrate their security posture. 

What Does This Mean for MSPs/MSSPs? 

In 2024, we predict that MSPs/MSSPs will see increased demand for specialized compliance services. This will require them to expand their offerings to include compliance audits, risk management and enhanced security solutions. To effectively meet these challenges, MSPs and MSSPs will need to invest in new technologies and advanced cybersecurity solutions that can answer this need.  

An automated vCISO platform can help MSPs/MSSPs provide compliance assessments. Achieving compliance will become a must-have, and service providers that are able to help SMBs understand their compliance status, highlight the gaps, and achieve compliance more quickly will gain the upper hand. These include automatically-generated tailored policies and strategic remediation plans with prioritized tasks to each client. A platform can also help track compliance, ensuring no regulation requirement falls between the cracks.

3. New Advancements and Risks in AI and Technology

The rapid advancements in AI, IoT and cloud computing have greatly accelerated business capabilities. They allow for unprecedented opportunities for SMBs, which were previously only available for large businesses. However, these advancements also bring new security challenges that are often more complex and sophisticated than traditional threats. 

For example, AI systems can become targets of cyberattacks, resulting in data exfiltration or damage to the business. IoT systems often lack security protocols, making them vulnerable to attacks that can compromise the entire SMB network. Cloud computing vulnerabilities or excessive permissions can lead to data breaches and loss of control over sensitive information. For SMBs, the risk is heightened due to typically lower levels of investment in robust cybersecurity measures compared to larger enterprises. 

What Does This Mean for MSPs/MSSPs? 

As trusted security advisors, MSPs and MSSPs must evolve their services in 2024 to address the unique challenges posed by AI, IoT, and cloud computing, ensuring that their SMB clients can safely benefit from these technologies while minimizing potential risks. This adaptation involves implementing stronger security protocols and defenses, like misconfiguration identification, the principle of least privilege, embedded observability and responsible AI. It also includes educating SMBs about the risks and best practices associated with these technologies. 

An automated vCISO platform is always up-to-date, ensuring your clients are always protected against the latest threats and risks with the latest policies. For example, GenAI policies that ensure safe use of GenAI.

4. Enhanced Cybersecurity Awareness Among Leadership

Growing awareness of digital threats has not escaped the attention of boards and management teams. Boards are becoming increasingly concerned about the reputational and financial risks associated with data breaches, which could result in regulatory fines, loss of customer trust and ceasing of operations. As a result, in 2024 there will be a growing demand from these leadership teams for investing in more robust and proactive security measures. 

What Does This Mean for MSPs/MSSPs? 

As cybersecurity increasingly becomes a board-level concern, there will be greater demand for executive team involvement in cybersecurity. Leadership will aim to constantly understand their current security posture, to enable them to manage risk effectively. MSPs/MSSPs can fulfill this need by simplifying cybersecurity, making the information accessible and summarizing the highlights and top-level insights in reports. By providing concise and clear information MSPs/MSSPs can support leadership’s strategic decision-making that aims to overcome security gaps. 

Automated vCISO platforms enable offering full-fledged vCISO services, including the creation of comprehensive security dashboards and reports, providing a view of the company’s security posture based on data measurements and risk scores.

5. Geopolitical Impact

Businesses around the world will be deeply influenced by geopolitical factors in 2024. From diverse global regulations to varied threat landscapes, a globally interconnected world requires SMBs to adapt their security strategies. This complexity is heightened by the current geopolitical climate conflicts, particularly in regions like the Middle East, the US (due to their involvement in the conflict) and highly unstable Muslim regions like Yemen and Iraq. Political tensions can lead to an increase in cyber threats, often targeting Western countries, and the US in particular. 

What Does This Mean for MSPs/MSSPs? 

The interplay of global geopolitics and cybersecurity presents a unique challenge for MSPs and MSSPs. They must ensure they have strong and comprehensive security controls, and must be able to monitor threats at all times. It’s also important to develop incident response plans and have clear policies in place to handle any breach or attack. Regular training and testing are also essential to ensure employees are familiar with the security protocols. Given the high stakes, an automated platform can reduce the overhead, boost security expertise and help MSPs and MSSPs focus on working with the customer.

6. vCISO Opportunity for Growth

SMBs across the board will require comprehensive security solutions and top-industry cybersecurity expertise in 2024, due to the aforementioned reasons. These include the need to address the growing number of threats, new compliance requirements, evolving digital risks and as a way to reassure boards they are taking the necessary measures to secure their infrastructure and data. Yet, their budgets will not always allow for hiring an in-house team. 

vCISOs who will be able to effectively meet this need are poised for unprecedented growth in 2024. They can expect to see growing demand for their services among SMBs, with the potential to build long-term business relationships. Cost-effective cybersecurity solutions like vCISO services will be particularly attractive as companies look to maximize the value of their investments. 

What Does This Mean for MSPs/MSSPs? 

MSPs and MSSPs that offer vCISO services will meet SMBs that are willing to pay for such comprehensive security services. This large and lucrative market provides an opportunity for MSPs and MSSPs to grow their revenue in the short and long term. It’s no wonder that the State of the Virtual CISO 2023 Report commissioned by Cynomi found that 45% of MSPs and MSSPs plan to add vCISO services to their offering by the end of 2024. 

Offering vCISO services also enables MSPs and MSSPs to ride the above trends and differentiate while growing their business. Thanks to AI-based vCISO technologies, in-house expertise is no longer a bottleneck for MSPs and MSSPs. Automated vCISO platforms reduce the overhead by providing an automated solution to each service, from cyber profiling to risk assessments to tailored security policies across access management, and more. This expands the range of services MSPs/MSSPs can offer while making the process more efficient and reliable.  

Looking Forward 

As we approach 2024, it becomes clear that the cybersecurity landscape for SMBs is expected to become even more risky and complex. As a result, SMB demand for comprehensive cybersecurity and vCISO services is expected to surge. 

This presents a unique and significant opportunity for MSPs and MSSPs. By embracing innovative technologies like automated vCISO platforms, you can offer comprehensive, efficient, and tailored cybersecurity solutions to your SMB clients. 

Now it’s up to you, will you position yourself at the forefront of protecting SMBs? By taking proactive steps,including building the right plan and choosing the right tools, you can stay ahead of the 2024 curve and enjoy opportunities for growth and success. 

Wishing you a prosperous 2024!


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